Chapter 35: Survivors & Dependents Educational Assistance Program (DEA)
DEA provides education and training opportunities to eligible dependents of veterans who are permanently and totally disabled due to a service-related condition, or who died while on active duty or as a result of a service related condition. The program offers up to 45 months of education benefits.
For more information on the Survivors' and Dependents' Educational Assistance Program, visit the U.S.Department of Veterans Affairs or call 1-888-GI-BILL-1.
Tips for Applying
For dependents of permanent and total disabled veterans, or those who have died as a result of their VA-rated disability
- You only need to fill out an application for the GI Bill® once; even if you switch schools. If you switch chapters, then you will need to apply for the new benefit
- Apply for Benefits at www.va.gov/education/how-to-apply.
- Under how do I apply select "find your education benefits form." Answer the questions as they apply to you and select apply now. Sign in to start your application.
- Fill out the online version of VA Form 22-5490 -The online application is very confusing; it will be helpful if you print a paper copy of the application to help navigate the online application
- All questions are in reference to the student, unless it specifically asks for the veteran's information
- At the end of your application, you will have an opportunity to upload documents in support of your claim. Uploading your documents at this time will help reduce the the amount of time needed for the VA to approve your claim. Documents must be under one megabyte in size. If you do not upload the documents during your application, you will need to fax or mail them to the VA. (VA fax: 314-552-9741).
- Upload the VA award letter showing the disability percentage of the veteran. You do not need to upload the entire packet, just the page with the percentage (%).
- Upon completing the application and document uploads, submit your application. Be sure to write down your "reference number"
- Print a copy of your application for your records
- After submitting your application you will need to complete a USD Veteran Information Sheet before we can send in the VA Form 22-1999 to begin your benefits.
- The benefit approval process can take up to three months. If/when approved, the VA will send you a Certificate of Eligibility. Bring your Certificate of Eligibility to USD Veterans Services in the Registrar's Office, Belbas Center 212. The VA does not contact USD about your benefits; You will be the first to know. If you have any questions about the status of your claim, you will need to call the VA at 888-442-4551 or submit a question online at www.gibill.va.gov.
Veteran Readiness and Employment (VR&E)
Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance (Chapter 35)
Survivors' and Dependents' Educational Assistance (Chapter 35)
VA's Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance (Chapter 35) program provides education and training opportunities to eligible dependents and survivors of certain Veterans.
Eligible individuals are Veterans’ and Servicemembers’ dependents, spouses and surviving spouses who have been found eligible by the Regional Processing Office (RPO) because of one of the following:
- The Veteran’s death was caused by the service-connected disability
- The Veteran is rated for total and permanent service-connected disability
- The Servicemember is Missing in Action (MIA)
- The Servicemember is captured in the line of duty
- The Servicemember is forcibly detained for longer than 90 days
- The Servicemember who VA determines has a service-connected permanent and total disability that will result in a discharge from military service
- Participants include a dependent child between the ages of 14 to 31 and a spouse, or surviving spouse, who qualifies for the benefit
- Special Assistance
- Special Restorative Training (SRT)
- Specialized Vocational Training (SVT)
It's simple to apply. Just follow these steps:
- Log in to your www.va.gov account at Education Benefits Application
- Go to the Forms drop down box
- Select and Apply for “VA Form 22-5490, Dependents Application for VA Education Benefits”
- Open and Print VA Form 22-5490, Dependents Application for VA Education Benefits
- Complete and mail the form to your nearest VA Regional Processing Office, which has jurisdiction over the State where you’ll advance your education and training
NOTE: Counseling is required under 38 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 21.3102 when the eligible individual has a disability and may require SRT or SVT. Additional information is available in VA Pamphlet 22-73-3, published on VA's Dependents' Educational Assistance webpage.
Veterans Affairs (VA) Ch. 35 – Dependents’ Education Assistance
Dependents’ Education Assistance Benefit Summary:
Below is a summary of how the Department of Veterans Affairs processes Survivors’ and Dependents’ Education Assistance benefits. To fully determine your eligibility for this benefit, please contact the Department of Veteran Affairs directly at (888) 442-4551.
- The Survivors’ and Dependents’ Education Assistance benefit provides assistance to dependents of military service members with a service-connected, permanent, and total disability or who were MIA, POW, or died in connection with a service-related disability.
- Students are paid directly by the VA on a monthly basis while attending courses. See Pay Rates & Training Times for more information.
How to use your Dependents’ Education Assistance:
Step One: Complete Veterans Affairs paperwork
Go to the VA.gov website to fill out and submit the appropriate Application for VA Education Benefits form to the Department of Veterans Affairs (see below).
- 22-5490 – Use if you are applying for Veterans education benefits for the first time.
- 22-5495 – Use if you have used your benefits at another institution and would like to transfer to Liberty University as your primary institution. You will also need to use this form if you are changing the degree level you are pursuing.
You may want to print a copy of this document for your records. To verify you have successfully submitted your form to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, a confirmation number will appear on the bottom of each page of the form you print out.
Step Two: Contact the Office of Military Affairs
Once you fill out the Application for VA Education Benefits and submit it to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, you will need to notify Liberty’s Office of Military Affairs that you will be using your Chapter 35 benefits for your enrollment. We do not automatically receive this notice from the Department of Veterans Affairs. To accomplish this step, we recommend you submit any one document from the following list to the Office of Military Affairs, or contact us directly to advise us of the benefit you will be using. Documentation is not required to set up your benefit with Liberty University, but it is encouraged to ensure the most accurate processing of your benefit and to give you access to special payment plan accommodations.
- Application for VA Education Benefits
- Certificate of Eligibility (COE)
- VA Award Letter
- Copy of your eBenefits page
- If you submit a VA document to the Office of Military Affairs, please ensure you include your full name and Student ID to ensure we can process your document for you without delay.
- Please be sure to inform our office that you are using the Chapter 35 benefit in order for us to certify your enrollment to the VA. You may write the information on your document, notify us by phone, or email our office.
- The VA File number is required for your certifications to be submitted to the Department of Veterans Affairs. If this information is not included on your VA documentation, you may contact our office directly to give us this information. Because you are using Chapter 35 benefits, the File Number should be the Social Security Number of the Veteran through whom you are receiving benefits.
- Any benefit documentation and information can be submitted to the Office of Military Affairs by:
Step Three: Registration and Certification
Once you have completed Steps 1 and 2, and you have enrolled in courses, the Office of Military Affairs will submit an enrollment certification (22-1999) to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. This process typically takes 3-5 business days, but may take longer during peak enrollment periods. Once your courses have been certified, you will receive an email to your Liberty email account indicating the courses and dates that were reported to the VA. On average it will take 6 weeks for the VA to process your certifications.
Once the VA has processed the enrollment certification, they will begin issuing your monthly payments to you directly for your courses. These monthly payments are issued at the beginning of each month for the previous month of enrollment.
Step Four: Complete Financial Check-In
Please remember that arrangements for the full payment of your tuition and fees must be made during the completion of your Financial Check-In. Within Financial Check-In, qualifying students have the option of using federal financial aid or payment plans.
Online students: The military payment plan is available through Financial Check-In for online students using Chapter 35 benefits. Please note this option will not be made available until after a VA document verifying the chapter of benefit being used is received by the Office of Military Affairs
Residential students: The deferred payment plan is available through Financial Check-In for residential students using Chapter 35 benefits. Please note this option will not be made available until after a VA document verifying the chapter of benefit being used is received by the Office of Military Affairs
Please review the information on our Financial Check-In Guide for more information.
Step Five: Keep the VA Updated on Any Changes
You are required to keep the Department of Veterans Affairs updated on any changes made to your benefit. Such changes include but are not limited to:
- Changing degree levels
- Changing your primary school of attendance
Failure to maintain the accuracy of this information with the VA may result in delayed or denied payment from the VA.
GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.
Chapter 35 - Dependents' Educational Assistance (DEA) Program
The Dependents’ Educational Assistance (DEA) Program was established by the War Orphans’ Educational Assistance Act of 1956. This educational program provides benefits to the spouse and children, including step-children and adopted children, of veterans who died in the defense of the United States or who were completely and permanently disabled due to injuries sustained while on active duty.
The links below have more information on Chapter 35:
Chapter 35 Benefit Description
The DEA program provides up to 45 months of education and training benefits to eligible dependents of certain veterans. These benefits may be used for degree and certificate programs, apprenticeship, and on-the-job training. If you are a spouse, you may be eligible to take a correspondence course. Other types of courses, such as remedial, deficiency, and refresher courses, may be approved under certain circumstances. Effective October 1, 2013, some recipients may be eligible to receive up to 81 months of GI Bill® benefits if they use DEA program benefits in conjunction with other VA education benefits.
The program pays a monthly benefit stipend directly to the student and is based on the type of training and the number of credit hours being taken. Benefits are paid in arrears (after the training period). For example, a student receives payment for August at the beginning of September. Payments are prorated for any partial months of attendance (ex. August & December). Payment amounts do not include enrollment break periods (ex. Winter & Summer break). VA Benefits will not be processed for courses which are not required for a student’s degree plan and may or may not be processed for repeated courses.
Eligible children may use this benefit while they are between the ages of 18 and 26, however under some circumstances the period of eligibility can be extended until the age of 31.
Spouses generally have ten (10) years from the date the VA establishes eligibility to use the benefit. However, effective October 10, 2008, a spouse may remain eligible for this benefit for twenty (20) years from the effective date of rating if the veteran was rated permanently and totally disabled within an effective date of three (3) years from discharge.
Surviving spouses of service members who died while on active duty have twenty (20) years from the date of death to use this benefit.
Individuals eligible to receive education benefits under the Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program (Chapter 35) you must be the spouse, daughter, or son (including step-children and adopted children) of a veteran or service member who:
- Died or is permanently and totally disabled as a result of a service-connected disability. The disability must arise out of active service in the armed forces
- Died from any cause while such permanent and total service-connected disability was in existence
- Missing in action or captured in the line of duty by a hostile force
- Was forcibly detained or interned in the line of duty by a foreign government or power
- Is hospitalized or receiving outpatient treatment for a service connected permanent and total disability and is likely to be discharged for that disability
How to Apply for Benefit
If this is the first time you are using your education benefits, please visit the VA Ebenefits homepage and apply online by completing VA Form 22-5490 ( Dependents’ Application for VA Education Benefits).
If you have used your benefits before at another school, please visit the VA Ebenefits homepage and complete VA Form 22-1995 (Change of Location).
If you are unable to apply on line, you may complete a hardcopy of VA Form 22-5490 and/or VA Form 22-1995 and return it to the VA Western Regional Education Office at the following address:Western Region
VA Regional Office
PO Box 8888
Muskogee, OK 74402-8888
You can obtain a copy of the VA Form 22-5490 online at the VA website.
You can obtain a copy of the VA Form 22-1995 online at the VA website.
For more information concerning the Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program (Chapter 35) or any other education benefit chapter please visit the GI Bill ® homepage or by calling 1-888-442-4551.
Other Helpful Links/Websites
GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/.
Benefits chapter application 35 online
Chapter 35 - Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program (DEA)
The Survivors and Dependents Educational Assistance (DEA) program provides education and training opportunities to eligible dependents and spouses of veterans who are permanently and totally disabled due to a service-related condition or of veterans who died while active duty or as a result of a service-related condition.
Spouse, children of a veteran and/or service member who meets at least one of the following requirements:
Is determined to be permanently and totally disabled from service connected causes.
Is on active duty and is likely to be discharged with a permanent and total disability.
Died in service.
Died of service connected causes.
Is currently missing in action or caputured in the line of duty.
Submit Certificate of Eligibility (received in the mail from the VA after processing application for benefits) to UC Merced's Veteran Certifying Official.
Each semester, the student must fill out a Veteran Enrollment Card and submit to UC Merced's Veteran Certifying Official.
Changes to Schedule
- All changes to the spouse/dependents schedule (major/minor, adds, drops, class cancellations, and/or withdrawals) must be reported to UC Merced's Veteran Certifying Official.
- If you are transferring in from another school you are required to complete and return VA Form 22-5495 to the VA Regional Processing Office.
If a spouse/dependent needs a tutor, they should apply for tuitorial assistance.
- Complete form VA Form 22-1990t
- Take form to your tutor to sign and date the application
- Take form to UC Merced's Veteran Certifying Official to sign and date the application
- Mail the completed form to VA Regional Processing Office after your tutoring is complete.
- The spouse/dependent must be attending at least half-time.
- Contact, negotiation of wages and pay is the spouse/dependent responsibility.
- The spouse/dependent is eligible to receive $100 per month, up to $600 per semester and up to $1200 total, for tutor-reimbursement expenses.
UC Merced's Veteran Certifying Official
209-228-7641 | [email protected]
Veterans Administration Educational Office
Veterans Administration Direct Deposit Information
GI Bill® Chapter 35 (Survivors and Dependents Assistance [DEA])
DEA offers education and training opportunities to dependents of Veterans who are permanently and totally disabled due to a service-related condition or of Veterans who died while on active duty or as a result of a service-related condition. (Illinois veterans may qualify for the MIA/POW scholarship also listed on our website)
Click here to be directed to the online application.
Chapter 35 benefits provide a monthly stipend directly to the recipient. This program does not directly pay the university tuition or fees. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure payment to the university for tuition and fees.
Please visit http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/resources/benefits_resources/rate_tables.asp for current payment rates.
- Submit your application to the university. Do not pay application fee as it will be automatically waived.
- Complete GI Bill® application. (see Application Process)
- You will receive an eligibility letter for the GI Bill from the VA in 4 to 6 weeks. This form can be turned in at the Registrar's office or can be uploaded through the Green Sheet online submission described below.
- Complete the VBI (Veterans Benefit Information Form; Green Sheet)
- Students must already have class schedule to complete; first time students can also upload a copy of their Certificate of Eligibility through this process.
- Complete online here: https://www.siue.edu/military/educational-benefits/benefit-information-form.shtml
- A paper copy can be found on our Veteran Resources tab. The form can also be completed in the Registrar's office or the Office of Military and Veteran Services.
- This form is completed each semester and anytime a class is added or dropped.
- All forms are submitted to the Office of the Registrar. Online submission will be automatically submitted.
- NOTE: If benefits are used at another school, proceed to the application process and begin an application. Answer the question that asks if you are updating benefits to be directed to the correct form.
- You must be a spouse or child (including stepchild or adopted child) of a:
- Veteran permanently and totally disabled as the result of, or dies of, a service-related disability.
- Disability must arise out of or be aggravated by active duty.
- Veteran with a permanent and total service-connected disability who dies from any cause.
- Servicemember who is missing in action or is captured in the line of duty and is currently being held by a hostile force.
- Servicemember who is currently being forcibly detained or interned in the line of duty by a foreign government or power.
- Servicemember who VA determines has a service-connected permanent and total disability, and at the time this determination is a member of the Armed Forces who is hospitalized or receiving outpatient medical care, services, or treatment and is likely to be discharged or released from service due to this service-connected disability.
- If a child of a Veteran, you may receive benefits from the ages 18 to 26.
- In certain instances, benefits may be granted to those under or above this age range.
- Applicants will be notified of their possible beginning and ending dates based on their claims.
Link for VA Full Benefit Description
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